10 Best Creole Restaurants in New Orleans from the Quarter to Uptown

Nothing is black and white in New Orleans, whether you’re talking food, music, politics or history.  Visitors might find talk of Creole cuisine confusing - what is it exactly? Is it the same as Cajun? Both styles of cooking share French roots and many of the same ingredients.  Beyond that, it’s a matter of country style vs. city style, rustic and hearty fare vs. rich, sophisticated preparation.

To understand Creole cuisine, first understand its roots. Creoles were city folk originally from Europe who settled in New Orleans. Primarily French and Spanish, Creoles hailed from wealthy families and brought their own chefs from Madrid, Paris, and other European capitals.  

These chefs adapted classic cooking techniques to incorporate unfamiliar ingredients like mirliton, crawfish, pompano and snapper.  Add into the equation the culinary influence of the enslaved Africans who served in these households, the influence of Choctaw Indians and immigrants from Ireland and Germany and a diverse gumbo indeed emerges.

The bastions of Creole cuisine, restaurants that have served visitors and locals in New Orleans for decades, if not centuries, are woven into the very fabric of New Orleans culture. These are places where dinner is an experience not to be rushed. Dress up a bit and sit back and relax, you're about to savor a seminal New Orleans experience.

French Quarter
Mr. B's Bistro
Photo courtesy of Beth D'Addono

Located in the French Quarter, and operated by the famous Brennan restaurant family, the venue is one of the city's original gourmet bistros. The Gumbo Ya Ya, one of the kitchen's signature dishes, is worth the trip in itself, a flavor-filled...  Read More

Emeril's New Orleans
Photo courtesy of Courtesy of Emeril's

Barbecue shrimp, homemade andouille sausages, andouille crusted drum - these are just a few of Chef Emeril Lagasse's signature dishes. Emeril's, Lagasse's flagship restaurant that celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2015, remains a destination...  Read More

French Quarter

Antoine's is just wrapping up its historic 175th anniversary year, a landmark any way you slice it. Oysters Rockefeller originated here in 1889, and the menu hasn't changed much since. Expect rich French Creole cuisine and Gulf seafood including...  Read More


Opened as a grocery store in 1898, Mandina's morphed into a full-service restaurant in 1932, and is still family operated. The prices are low, and the environment casual and unpretentious. The menu consists of the same New Orleans specialties...  Read More

Reopened in early 2014 after Creole Cuisine Concepts purchased from retiring owners Gunter and Evelyn Preuss, Broussard's was treated to a $1 million renovation and the results are just gorgeous. The A-team here includes GM Chris Ycaza, whose...  Read More

Upperline Restaurant

Located in the Uptown neighborhood of New Orleans, right off the St. Charles Streetcar line, the Upperline is a great reason to explore past the French Quarter, and experience a contemporary take on Creole cuisine. Chef Trent Osborne took over...  Read More

Arnaud's offers some of the Big Easy's best Creole food and a triple threat of dining options. Enjoy jazz in the Jazz Bistro, a romantic dinner in the main dining room, or cocktails in the French 75 Bar. The classy joint is located just steps...  Read More

Clancy's Restaurant
Photo courtesy of New Orleans CVB

Removed from the usual downtown tourist traffic, this classy Uptown dining room's a hit with the locals. The skilled waitstaff, clad in tuxedos, deliver plates of Nouvelle Creole cuisine and introduce the impressive wine and scotch collection....  Read More

New Orleanians are not only loyal to this traditional bastion of Creole dining, they're loyal to their waiter, and if they're old enough, to their waiter's son. Generations come and go, but Galatoire's, with its classic menu of trout meuniere,...  Read More

Commander's Palace
Photo courtesy of Commander's Palace

"Dirt to plate within 100 miles", is the M.O. of head Creole chef Tory McPhail of Commander's Palace, located in the Garden District of New Orleans. He strives to have 90% of his ingredients come to his restaurant from within the aforementioned...  Read More


Meet Beth D'Addono

Beth D'Addono is a food and travel writer obsessed with flavor, exploring cultures, street music and the city of New Orleans.

After spending years flying in regularly to research stories,...  More About Beth

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